Enforcement

Enforcement

Michigan

  • Cities and villages may enforce local ordinances related to ancillary activities to regulate drilling and operations of gas wells.  For example, ordinances can regulate industrial practices associated with fracking.
  • Any interested person may make a verified complaint to the Supervisor of Wells if waste is occurring at the site. The Supervisor is then required to hold a hearing to determine if waste is or will take place and what remedy should be applied to resolve the situation. Email fitchh@michigan.gov to reach the Supervisor of Wells.
  • Citizens can file formal noise pollution report caused by drilling and fracking activities. The Supervisor of Wells may require permittee to collect information and control the noise pollution. Email fitchh@michigan.gov to reach the Supervisor of Wells.

Ohio

  • You can participate in Water Quality Standard hearings if and when they are held. The Ohio Clean Water Act requires a public hearing to determine standards when they are established, amended or repealed. See the rules here.
  • You can participate in enforcing the requirement that well owners must restore surface land after drilling is complete, or after using fluids for oil and gas exploration. If a well owner refuses to restore the land, any person may file a complaint to the Chief of the Ohio Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management.  Complaints received must be investigated.

Pennsylvania

  • Any person can provide information creating reason to believe a violation of a statute or permit is occurring. The Department of Environmental Protection must investigate. Contact the DEP department which issued the statute or permit to report information regarding violations. A list of programs and contact information can be found on the DEP website.
  • Under Chapter 32 of the Oil and Gas Act, landowners/water purveyors may request the investigation of groundwater pollution to the Department of Environmental Protection. The requesting entity must provide their name, address, phone number, the type/use/location of the water supply being polluted, any quantity or quality data to justify the pollution, well information, and a description of the pollution. The Department must respond within 10 days of notification and decide within 45 days whether pollution has occurred. If it is determined that pollution has occurred, operators must restore/replace water suppliers impacted.

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Images courtesy of Steven Huyser-Honig,
West Grand Boulevard Collaborative, & Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve.